Wednesday, 30 January 2019

"I Will Prepare An Attack Squad."

"None of the humans can guess our true purpose."
This 32mm scale metal miniature of a Sontaran is sold by “Warlord Games” and can be purchased as part of the Nottingham-based company’s "Sontaran Squad" five-figure boxed set. Resplendent in the blue-armour costume redesigned by Neill Gorton this latest incarnation of the “militaristic clones” made his first appearance in the April 2008 BBC television story "The Sontaran Stratagem".

Initially primed with a double coat of "Vallejo" Black, the bulbous-headed humanoid had his battle armour, belt and helmet treated to a layer of Gunmetal Blue before having them shaded in "Citadel" Nuln Oil. These areas were then dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Gunmetal Blue for as long as it took for the metallic Model Colour paint to provide the sculpt’s ridges with a discernible silver shine.
"Doctor Who: Exterminate!" WIPs - These four Sontarans are already half-way finished
The Sontaran’s space suit was pigmented using “Vallejo” Heavy Bluegrey, and then washed with some watered-down “Citadel” Drakenhof Nightshade. As a final step (or three) I subsequently tidied up the  “Vallejo” Black base coat on warrior’s large laser-rifle before carefully dry-brushing it with Heavy Charcoal, and darkened the eye slits on the alien’s helmet with a tad more Black…

Having finished this figure I now have enough models (posed holding their firearms low-down in front of them) to utilise the “Sontaran Bodyguards” Recruitment Card on my “Doctor Who: Exterminate!” Battlefield, and need only paint one last diminutive extra-terrestrial warrior to complete a functional Sontaran Faction under the command of Staal ‘The Undefeated’. However, ideally I’d like to play some larger games against my significant forces of Daleks, Cybermen, Zygons and Sea Devils, so plan to paint four more of the clones in a single batch and therefore be able to deploy two three-miniature strong “Sontaran Patrol” units, alongside the General and his bodyguards, as part of a formidable four Recruitment Card sized Faction whenever a scenario permits it.
"Doctor Who: Into The Time Vortex" WIPs - A Cyberman, a defeated Dalek and the Cyber Leader
Interestingly, these'll probably be the last of my "Warlord Games" Sontarans which I'll be undercoating using "Vallejo" Black, as I think I'm missing an opportunity to paint them up even quicker by simply applying Heavy Bluegrey over the entire figure straight from the start. In addition, I've taken the time to pick out these warriors' black belt communicators, rather than leave them "Vallejo" Gunmetal Blue as I've done in the past.

Lastly, I making some significant headway with the six Cybermen models I own from "The Tomb Of The Cybermen" boxed set, and now just need to give them a dry-brush of "Citadel" Ironbreaker before settling down so as to 'pick out' all their piping. I have also begun finishing off a handful of partially-parted Daleks I have had hanging around my painting table for a while now, including a heavily damaged drone objective marker.

Monday, 28 January 2019

"And Now, Young Skywalker… You Will Die."

"Once more the Sith will rule the galaxy, and we shall have peace."
This 35mm tall hard plastic miniature of Darth Sidious is produced by “Fantasy Flight Games” and can be found inside the company's Emperor Palpatine Commander Expansion for "Star Wars: Legion". "Scheming, powerful, and evil to the core", the Sith Lord was originally played by actress Marjorie Eaton in Irvin Kershner's 1980 American epic space opera film "The Empire Strikes Back", with Clive Revill providing his voice.

The "primary antagonist of the Star Wars franchise” was initially undercoated using a double layer of "Vallejo" Black and then heavily dry-brushed with some Heavy Charcoal. I then applied some “Citadel” Nuln Oil to the Emperor’s inner clothing so as to darken it down, but decided against applying any shading to his outer robes in the hope it would provide the figure with something akin to the bluish hue the character is often seen emanating…
"Crooked Dice Game Design Studio" WIPs - A Giant Ape and X-Commando
I took some excellent advice from Dave Stone (“The Game Cupboard") and ‘picked out’ the former Supreme Chancellor’s skin using a combination of “Citadel” Rakarth Flesh and Reikland Fleshshade, before applying a tiny amount of Druchii Violet beneath Sheev’s sunken eyes. Finally, I pigmented Palpatine’s walking staff with “Vallejo” Heavy Sienna and later washed it with “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade.

Stepping away from science fiction to horror hobbying, I have recently found myself playing a few games of the “Resident Evil 2: The Board Game” by “Steamforged Games”, and despite enjoying the rules enormously have found myself significantly underwhelmed by its slightly under-sized, soft plastic miniatures. Having previously settled upon “Crooked Dice Game Design Studio” to help sate my desire for replacement models, I have started work on a quartet of the company’s (Department) X-Commandos for my heroes, and their formidably-sized Giant Ape as a potential danger which may be encountered lurking within the abandoned Umbrella Corporation central laboratory…
"Toon Realms" WIPs - Lord Rascal, an Icky Spider and Pootle the Wizard
In addition, I have taken ownership of (yet) another consignment of figures from “Lucid Eye Publications” so as to help me complete my twenty-four point strong ‘Evil Army’ for “Dragon Rampant”. Amongst these ‘reinforcements’ were a consignment of Lord Rascal’s Icky Spiders, and I have resultantly spent a little time testing out a straightforward paint scheme on one of the not so little arachnids.

Ultimately I intend to field two six-model strong Lesser Warbeast units of these furry fiends, and planned on pigmenting them in a myriad of eye-watering colours. However, having permanently based the spiders and ascertained just how little clearance my brush tip will have in order to reach their underbellies I’m currently erring on the side of sanity with a simple dry-brushed black(ish) palette with angry red eyes and off-white fangs. I have though decided to also progress the great Necromancer himself, Lord Rascal, as well as his arch-magical nemesis, Pootle The Wizard, and hope to have at least one of these ‘mystic art masters’ far more colourfully attired.

Saturday, 26 January 2019

"Resident Evil 2" Board Game Report: Spider-Man & Black Widow Verses Zombies - Part Two

"The story so far... Whilst visiting Raccoon City on a photography assignment, the Daily Bugle's Peter Parker has uncovered some alarming report's concerning the Umbrella Corporation. Having contacted the Avenger, Natalia Romanova, for some much needed support, the friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man has donned his crime-fighting costume and started to make his way to Raccoon City's Police Department. However, both Web-head and the Black Widow soon find their way to their rendezvous point blocked by the brain-chomping Undead..."

Trapped at the beginning of an alleyway, Spider-Man utilised his web-shooters to their maximum potential by rapidly firing three volleys of webbing at the fast-approaching zombie in front of him. The Daily Bugle photographer's aim was off though, and only succeeded in allowing the Undead cadaver blocking off his escape root to make an "Out-Of-Sequence" Reaction, and stumble directly into the costumed crime-fighter.

Ordinarily, any subsequent attack risked the chance that the flesh-eating ghoul would be able to gouge a chunk out of its prey, however, because Web-head had the "Cool Under Fire" special ability, it was agreed that he would be able to use his web-shooters (an item) on this one occasion "while one or more enemies are in his square without making an evade roll." This decision potentially somewhat jarred with the rule "Attacking An Enemy In The Same Square", within where it states "If the attack is unsuccessful, the targeted enemy makes a basic attack which cannot be evaded", but it was felt under the circumstances that our 'house rule' better represented the smart-mouthed vigilante characteristically keeping his head when under intense pressure.
Shockingly, the triple attack once again missed, and it was only during Spider-Man's third action that he finally managed to buy a little breathing room by pushing the moaning minion backwards. A fourth attempt to overcome his foe resulted in the super-hero completely running out of web-fluid and the walking dead being right at his throat. The Black Widow would seemingly need to come to the rescue of Peter Parker's alter-ego. However, having sensed movement inside the Upper Room, Natalia ended her activation outside the location's open eastern door. Confirming her worst fears, Romanova spotted a zombie shuffling towards her...

Spider-Man attempted to somersault over the Undead corpse before him, and evading the ghoulish monster's attack bounded north past his ungodly opponent and further up the alleyway. Behind him, the youth could hear his pursuer groan and turn in his direction. Meanwhile, the Black Widow managed to push the zombie bothering her up against the Upper Room's locked south-western door with a triple blast from her Stingers, and race up to the door which adjoined the Final Room. The walking ghoul at the Avenger's location slowly stumbled north towards the black-clad S.H.I.E.L.D. agent.
Activating her "Reckless" special ability, the Black Widow took "an out-of sequence activation" and opened the door to the Final Room. A double-zap from her Stingers pushed its Undead occupant from the centre of the location back to the R.C.P.D. entranceway. With a groan, the zombie lurched towards his assailant, whilst behind Natalia she could hear the brain-hungry ghoul in the Upper Room shuffling after her. Meanwhile, Spider-Man, deciding against entering the Tiny Room, simply rushed up to the Upper Room's locked south-western door and caught his breath. The walking cadaver he'd previously somersaulted over could be heard slowly stumbling along the alleyway some way behind him.

Peter Parker's alter-ego opened the door to the Upper Room and due to not having any remaining web-fluid acrobatically made his way towards the building's north-east corner. His dramatic entry caused the location's zombie to turn its full attention upon him rather than Romanova, and it closed to within biting range. Unfortunately the sound also allowed the Undead in the Final Room to react too, and the zed frighteningly closed upon the Black Widow as a result.
Despite "attacking at point-blank range... only [being] advisable as a last resort" Natalia manged to push her attacker back and took the opportunity to run to the R.C.P.D. entranceway. With an inhuman snarl, the zombie lurched towards her, hoping to get in a tasty bite before his prey escaped. Behind them, the ravenous brain-eater circling Spider-Man attacked, but was unable to take a chunk out of the costumed crime-fighter due to the super-hero's spider-sense.

The Daily Bugle photographer finally kicked free of the hungry monster and sped into the Final Room, slamming shut the Upper Room's door as he went. Unfortunately, the noise caused the zombie which had been previously bothering the Black Widow to leap upon Spider-Man instead, and only the youth's speedy reflexes saved him from a nasty bite.
Realising that her would-be-assailant in the Final Room was now otherwise occupied, Romanova decided to put her mission first and foremost, and escaped through the entranceway into the Racoon City Police Department. As she sought sanctuary she heard her costumed companion somehow manage to dodge yet another attack from the walking dead.

However, Spider-Man was unable to steer clear of a savage claw down his arm as he hurled his opponent backwards one final time and raced to the safety of the R.C.P.D. himself. Fortunately, he felt he would have time to tend to his solitary wound before returning to his investigation of the Umbrella Corporation, and perhaps by then other super-heroes would have joined his cause...

Thursday, 24 January 2019

"Do Not Pursue Him!"

"He will not return to these lands. Far off yet is his doom, and not by the hand of man shall he fall."
This "cartoon scale white metal figure" of Sir Bones is produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and can be bought from the company's "Toon Realms" range. Sculpted by Steve Saleh and destined to lead Lord Rascal's ever-increasingly contingent of Skeleton Swordsmen, I thought this Undead knight would probably form part of the Necromancer's Undead Light Foot unit I'm currently painting for my 'Lord Of The Toons' project using the "Dragon Rampant" rule-set.

Initially primed with two coats of "Vallejo" Dark Sand, the miniature was arguably drenched in "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and subsequently dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Dark Sand. I then dry-brushed him rather more lightly with Dead White, before 'picking out' his sword, armour, belt buckle and shield emblem using a combination of "Citadel" Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil.
"Come not between the Nazgul and his prey!"
In order to give Sir Bones' hand-weapon something of an edge, as well as 'highlight' the details on the skeleton's ornamental armoured boss, armour plating and buckle, all of these areas were later delicately dry-brushed with some additional "Citadel" Ironbreaker. I also painted the warrior's shield and ragged under-garments in "Vallejo" Heavy Violet, and his billowing cloak with Heavy Red.

Both of these areas were eventually dirtied up with a splash of "Citadel" Nuln Oil, before I patiently dry-brushed the knight's hooded travelling cape with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Red. As a final touch I pigmented the flesh-less soldier's belt with a mix of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
Imperial Royal Guards WIPs - The three warrior just need some washes to be applied
Alongside Sir Bones, I have also managed to complete four more of Lord Rascal's Skeleton Swordsmen. All of these Undead combatants were painted in precisely the same way as their knighted leader, with the only difference being that their shield's were randomly base-coated using "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, Heavy Blue, Heavy Violet or Black before being treated to a wash of "Citadel" Nuln Oil.

Having spent some considerable time picking out plenty of bones and skulls, I've turned to some of the models within the Imperial Royal Guards Unit Expansion for "Star Wars: Legion" as a more colourful diversion. These "enigmatic warriors" by "Fantasy Flight Games" were originally going to be simply primed, shaded and dry-brushed. But as I wanted Emperor Palpatine’s personal bodyguards to have their famous "blood-red masks" stand out that bit more I have since base-coated their head-wear using "Vallejo" Dark Vermillion... 

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

"My Lord, I've Reached The Main Power Generators."

"The shield will be down in moments, you may start your landing."
This 36mm tall hard plastic miniature of Maximilian Veers is produced by “Fantasy Flight Games” and can be found inside the company's "General Veers Commander Expansion" for "Star Wars: Legion". "Famous for his leadership at the assault on Hoth", the Galactic Empire's Imperial Army Major General was played by actor Julian Glover and made his first appearance in  Irvin Kershner's 1980 American epic space opera film "The Empire Strikes Back".

The "ruthless and aggressive officer who enjoyed wreaking havoc with the destructive Imperial ground forces" was initially primed with two coats of "Vallejo" Heavy Bluegrey, shaded with "Citadel" Nuln Oil, and dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Bluegrey. The "expert in ground combat" then had some "Vallejo" Black applied to his boots, gloves, holster, firearm and googles. Both the General's hand-garments and E-11 Blaster Rifle were subsequently roughly highlighted with Heavy Charcoal, but only the gloves were shaded using "Citadel" Nuln Oil.
"Toon Realms" WIPs - Sir Bones has been primed, shaded, dry-brushed and had his base-layers applied
Originally, Veers' armour and helmet were pigmented using a combination of "Vallejo" Dark Grey and "Citadel" Nuln Oil. However, once dry, I felt the mix looked much too dark and hardly made the commander of "Death Squadron's ground troops" stand out upon the battlefield. Having resultantly done some additional research though I found several photographs of Maximilian wearing an 'Imperial Green' chest plate, so decided to re-paint the figure with "Vallejo" Heavy Grey and a significant splash of "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green.  

As some final touches I 'picked out' the General's rank buttons with some dots of "Vallejo" Heavy Red and Heavy Blue", then appropriately washed them with "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson and Drakenhof Nightshade. Plus, applied a line of "Citadel" Ironbreaker around the cunning tactician's googles and slightly muted its shininess with a dash of Nuln Oil...
Lord Rascal's Skeleton Warriors WIPs - The Undead soldiers are slowly having all their detail 'picked-out'
Satisfied by finishing a model which has rather embarrassingly been sat upon my table partially-painted since "Fantasy Flight Games" first released it, I have knuckled down so as to progress some more of my recent purchases from "Lucid Eye Publications" for the Ninth Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge. I plan to have Sir Bones lead my ever-growing number of Lord Rascal's Skeleton Swordsmen for "Dragon Rampant" by "Osprey Publishing", so decided upon a somewhat regal-coloured palette for the Undead knight.

In addition, I have been slowly persevering with four of Lord Rascal's Skeleton Warriors too. I've decided to stick to precisely the same mixture of "Vallejo" paints for their shields as I have previously used on the Necromancer's sword-carrying corpses, and intend to expand the unit in order for it to fully utilise the special rule "Wall of Spears"; where their Armour increases by 1 point against Attacks (but not Shooting).  

Sunday, 20 January 2019

"Resident Evil 2" Board Game Report: Spider-Man & Black Widow Verses Zombies

This game was played using Scenario 1A - Getting To The Police Department from "Resident Evil 2: The Board Game" by "Steamforged Games". However, in order to allow us to set-up a quick(ish) play through, the in-game plastic figures were replaced with a handful of my painted "Copplestone Castings" zombies and a pair of re-painted "Heroclix" miniatures. The table was set-up exactly as instructed by the "Capcom" licensed game's rulebook, including the contents of its Item Decks, Tension Deck, Character Start points and zombie locations 

Spider-Man was armed with his famous web-shooters and enough web-fluid for fifteen shots. He also had the "Cool Under Fire" special skill, which meant that once per activation he "may use an item while one or more enemies are in his square without making an evade roll." The costumed crime-fighter would start the game in the top north-western corner. The Black Widow was armed with her Stingers and enough electricity for fifteen shots. She also had the special skill "Reckless", which meant "at the end of any character's activation including her own" Natalia "may take an out-of-sequence activation" and "after doing so, she must forfeit her following activation", and the "Intrigue" ability, which allows her "once per scenario" to "discard a card drawn from the tension deck without resolving the effects." The Avenger would start the game in an alleyway south of the Tiny Room.

The super-heroes would successfully complete this scenario if they all leave the playing area via the western door in the Final Room. Once a character has left the playing area though, they cannot activate."
"The story so far... Whilst visiting Raccoon City on a photography assignment, the Daily Bugle's Peter Parker has uncovered some alarming report's concerning the Umbrella Corporation. Having contacted the Avenger, Natalia Romanova, for some much needed support, the friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man has donned his crime-fighting costume and started to make his way to Raccoon City's Police Department. However, both Web-head and the Black Widow soon find their way to their rendezvous point blocked by the brain-chomping Undead..."

Spotting the ghoulish zombie shuffling towards him down the alleyway, Spider-Man immediately activated and spent the first of his four actions shooting at the walking cadaver. The masked vigilante's web-shooters were a "rapid fire" weapon, which meant he could "spend one additional ammunition point to roll an extra attack dice". One of his shots pushed the zombie back, allowing the super-hero to move south and then fire both his web-shooters at his target again. The groaning corpse was nicely wrapped up in sticky webbing, and out of the game for good. As no other Undead were around nothing occurred in either the subsequent reaction or tension phases.
The Black Widow ran east along the alleyway she found herself in and turning to head north saw a zombie stood between her and a potentially useful item. As her "Widow's Bite" was also a "rapid fire" weapon the former Russian spy fired a double burst at the fiend, and pushed it further north up the alleyway. Disconcertingly, the creature staggered back towards her, making a loud painful groan.

Spider-Man headed south-east, opening the door to the First Room and stepped inside. Everything was eerily quiet, and the place seemed deserted. Meanwhile the Black Widow fired a second double-powered blast at her would-be assailant and brought the creature down permanently. Natalia then made her way up north to search amongst some debris, and considered whether to perhaps enter the Lower Room next time..?
Peter Parker's alter-ego swung himself south across the First Room towards a potentially useful item located in its south-west corner. There was clearly no-one else in the place to worry about as far as the reaction phase was concerned, but during the tension phase it seemed the claustrophobic location was ideal for an "Undead Ambush" as two dark silhouettes outside were the wall-crawler's "only warning before glass shatters to jagged shards and death resumes its tireless pursuit!"

Suddenly, instead of simply facing something useful on the floor in front of him, Spider-Man was looking into the hungry faces of two freshly spawned zombies. Completely oblivious to her colleague's plight, the Black Widow searched the end of the alleyway she was in and discovered a green herb. This would allow Romanova to heal herself or a friend "in the same or adjacent square one level." The Avenger then kicked open the door to the Lower Room and immediately fired a double-blast at the zombie she saw inside. Unfortunately the shots went wild, and only succeeded in attracting the green-hued creature's attention. It unpleasantly stumbled towards the former Russian super-spy, it's arms outstretched...
Spider-Man acrobatically somersaulted back away from his assailants, threw open the First Room's south-east door and hurled himself through it, slamming it shut behind him as he went. He was momentarily safe, but was now facing another zombie which stood between him and his passage north. Hearing the super-hero's dramatic entrance into the dark alleyway, the Undead monster shuffled south towards him.

Determined to bring down her foe fast, the Black Widow actually used her "rapid fire" "Widow's Bite" to its maximum potential and used one action to fire a triple-burst at the cadaver stomping towards her inside the Lower Room. The zombie was destroyed, allowing Natalia to race west and open the location's door. There were still a few hurdles between Romanova and the Raccoon City Police Department, but she had plenty of juice left in her Stingers, as well as a little time on her side.

To Be Continued...

Friday, 18 January 2019

Will Somebody Get This Big Walking Carpet Out Of My Way?"

"Come here, you big coward."
These four 47mm tall hard plastic miniatures of Wookie Warriors are produced by “Fantasy Flight Games” and can be found inside the company's four-figure strong "Wookie Warriors" Expansion Box for "Star Wars: Legion". "Easily assembled" this quartet show the Kashyyyk Killers "charging into the fray, brandishing their Ryyk Blades" and consists of a Bowcaster Wookie, a Wookie Warrior Leader and two Wookie Warriors.

As with my previously painted Chewbacca miniature, each figure was originally undercoated with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, shaded with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade, and dry-brushed with both (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and (lighter) Heavy Brown. I then applied a combination of "Citadel" Doombull Brown and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade to any waist-bags, straps or ammunition pockets on the miniatures.
"What are you looking at? I know what I'm doing."
Having decided to simply pigment all of their bandoleer in "Vallejo" Gunmetal Grey, I also used this metallic acrylic paint to 'pick out' their firearms (whether holstered or not) and their shoulder-armour. All of these areas were subsequently washed with some "Citadel" Nuln Oil, before being 'highlighted' with more "Vallejo" Gunmetal Grey. In addition, I shaded the shoulder-pads and the Wookie Warrior Leader's arm-shield with a splash of "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade to help separate it from the plain dull 'steel' look of their weaponry.
"Chewie. Chewie? All right. Don't lose your temper."
As a final step, I painted the Wookies' infamous blades with "Citadel" Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil, and later dry-brushed their edges with a spot more Ironbreaker. I also dabbed a spot of either "Vallejo" Heavy Brown or Gold over the furry aliens' hair braids and gave them a quick wash of "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade for good measure.

Sticking with "Star Wars: Legion" I have made some additional progress on a number of Imperial miniatures from the range, as well as started 'boxing off' the different areas on my Leia Organa Commander Expansion figure. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the model which has especially caught my attention is that of the Emperor Palpatine, and I've been gratefully following the advice of Dave Stone ("The Game Cupboard") so as to capture Darth Sidious' unhealthy facial pallor.
"Star Wars: Legion" WIPs - An Imperial Royal Guard, Emperor Palpatine, a Scout Trooper and Leia Organa
Due to the straightforward nature of pigmenting "the Sith master of Darth Vader", I have simultaneously been working on his four Imperial Royal Guards and seven Scout Troopers. The former chancellor's crimson robed personal bodyguards actually took a bit more preparation work than I anticipated, owing to some of their parts proving to be slightly ill-fitting, and as a result I have had to apply a little 'grey-stuff' to the odd join before priming them "Vallejo" Heavy Red...

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

"Give Me A Weapon. I Will Destroy Him."

"By your dawn I shall be seven hundred million miles from here."
This 35mm metal Sontaran model is produced by “Warlord Games" and can be bought from their "Doctor Who: Into The Time Vortex" range as part of their two-figure boxed set "The Time Warrior". Forced "to make an emergency landing on Earth while on reconnaissance when his ship was attacked by a squadron of Rutan fighters", Jingo Linx was created by Robert Holmes and made his BBC Television debut in the 1973 story "The Time Warrior".

The Sontaran Commander in the Fifth Sontaran Army Space Fleet was initially undercoated with two layers of "Vallejo" Black, roughly dry-brushed with Heavy Charcoal and enthusiastically washed with "Citadel" Nuln Oil. I then pigmented the clone soldier's knee-pads, belt and neck armour base-coated with "Citadel" Ironbreaker as I have previously done before when painting these Classic Third/Fourth Doctor monsters.
"Doctor Who: Exterminate!" WIPs - A Tetrap, a Sontaran and a Tetrap Master
However, having checked the 'official' "Warlord Games" painting guide, and subsequently some colour photographs of actor Kevin Lindsay in his costume, it became clear that the Sontaran's knee-pads were actually black as opposed to silver, so I went back and re-painted this area in "Vallejo" Black. The remaining metallic areas were subsequently shaded with (more) "Citadel" Nuln Oil.

Linx's awkwardly held rheon carbine was 'picked out' using a combination of "Vallejo" Dead White and Pale Grey. Whilst the alien's somewhat swarthy-looking skin colour was created by shading his "Vallejo" Heavy Skintone flesh with some Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter".
"Doctor Who: Into The Time Vortex" WIPs - A Vervoid, two Cybermen and the Thirteenth Doctor
Having finished a Seventies incarnation of the "militaristic clones from the planet Sontar", I have been busy progressing another of the "Nu Who" versions, alongside a plethora of other "Doctor Who: Exterminate" figures. I've previously primed a number of the Seventh Doctor's terrifying Tetraps, but never got round to properly shading or dry-brushing them. However, as a result of getting plenty of practice in recently, 'building up' the layers of fur on some "Star Wars: Legion" Wookies by "Fantasy Flight Games", I thought I'd return to the half dozen miniatures and give them another try.

In addition, I have 'dug out' all nine of my Vervoids so as to see whether I can apply a similar dry-brushing technique to some predominantly green extra-terrestrials. Lastly, I have started base-layering, washing and detailing a few more "Warlord Games" figures for the Ninth Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge, including the Thirteenth Doctor and the start of a "Tomb Of The Cybermen" faction...

Monday, 14 January 2019

"The Dead Awaken..."

"...For the hour is come for the Oathbreakers."
These four "cartoon scale white metal" Skeleton Swordsmen are produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and are available from the company's "Toon Realms" range. Sculpted by Steve Saleh and led by Lord Rascal, I thought this quartet would form part of the Undead Light Foot unit I'm currently building for my 'Lord Of The Toons' project using the "Dragon Rampant" rule-set.

Originally primed with two coats of "Vallejo" Dark Sand, the four miniatures were somewhat soaked in "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and subsequently dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Dark Sand. I then dry-brushed them rather more lightly with Dead White, before 'picking out' their swords and shield emblems using a combination of "Citadel" Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil.
"Who shall call them from the grey twilight, the forgotten people?"
So as to give the hand-weapons something of an edge, and to 'highlight' the details on the skeletons' ornamental armoured boss, both of these areas were later delicately dry-brushed with a little smidgen of "Citadel" Ironbreaker. I also painted each of their shields in either "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, Heavy Blue, Heavy Violet or Black, and eventually dirtied them all up with a splash of "Citadel" Nuln Oil.

Shifting my focus away from fantasy-based miniatures and to those from "a galaxy far, far away" I have succumbed to assembling even more figures from the "Star Wars: Legion" range by "Fantasy Flight Games". Perhaps somewhat naively I still have little intention of actually using the manufacturer's models to play their 'official' "game of thrilling infantry battles in the Star Wars universe!", yet that hasn't stopped me wanting to be able to field two sizeable opposing forces with which to re-fight the Galactic Civil War with a rule-set such as "Doctor Who: Exterminate!" by "Warlord Games".
"Star Wars: Legion" WIPs - An Imperial Royal Guard, Leia Organa and Emperor Palpatine
Resultantly, I have decided to add an additional hero to my Rebel Alliance army in the shape of Leia Organa. To be honest I'm a bit disappointed that the current Commander Expansion sculpt of the princess disconcertingly depicts her during the young woman's exploits on Endor's moon during "Return Of The Jedi", rather than that of "A New Hope". But hopefully an alternative sculpt of Alderaan's senator, complete with her iconic "cinnamon buns" hairstyle, will be made available at a future date.

In addition to Darth Vader's daughter I have also based and primed both the Emperor Palpatine, as well as his four Imperial Royal Guards. The Sith Lord himself should be a reasonably straightforward piece to paint, whilst his quartet of "enigmatic warriors", including a leader and electrostaff-armed guard, are going to understandably be a bit more colourful...

Saturday, 12 January 2019

"Stand By, Chewie. Here we go."

"Screaming about it can't help you."
This 47mm tall hard plastic miniature of Chewbacca is produced by “Fantasy Flight Games” and can be found inside the company's "Chewbacca Operative Expansion" for "Star Wars: Legion"; "a miniatures game of thrilling infantry battles in the Star Wars universe!" Described as "Han Solo’s ever-faithful companion", the Wookie was played by actor Peter Mayhew and made his first appearance in George Lucas' 1977 American epic space opera film "Star Wars".

The figure was initially primed with two coats of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, shaded with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade, and dry-brushed with both (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and (lighter) Heavy Brown. I then applied a combination of "Citadel" Doombull Brown and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade to Chewie's side-bag, plus "Vallejo" Gunmetal Grey to his "trusty bowcaster" and along his ammunition belt. These areas were subsequently washed with "Citadel" Nuln Oil and highlighted with a little more "Vallejo" Gunmetal Grey.
"Crooked Dice Game Design Studio" WIPs - These four Gabriel Hounds have been primed and shaded
I then encountered something of a painting dilemma, as having previously pigmented two slightly smaller models of Chewbacca I knew the next stage was to carefully pick out the leather covering his belt's line of hard metallic shell boxes. However, the sculpting for this version of the Wookie didn't allow for me to get my brush tip in between the tiny containers and I couldn't help feeling that there was more than enough brown on display without the smuggler's bandoleer being the same colour too.

Resultantly, and any purest "Star Wars" aficionados will want to look away at this point, I have left the ammunition belt a dull metallic colour so it stands out a little better on the figure. Finally, I applied some additional "Citadel" Nuln Oil to certain areas of the Wookie, in order to darken him down a bit and break up the colour consistency of Chewie's fur.
"Lucid Eye Publications" WIPs - Lord Rascal's Skeleton Warriors
Over the past few weeks I've been scouring my favourite miniature manufacturers looking for some alternative sculpts to the somewhat softly-detailed plastic zombie dogs found inside the "Resident Evil 2: The Boardgame" boxed set by "Steamforged Games Limited". Rather embarrassingly I already own a substantial amount of unpainted models produced by "Crooked Dice Game Design Studio", but thought their wonderfully creepy Gabriel Hounds would fit the bill rather nicely, so have set to work basing, priming, shading and dry-brushing a freshly-purchased quartet of the "spectral white dogs [which] wear the face of man."

In addition, I am continuing to work through my collection of "Lucid Eye Publications" figures and been steadily building up the bleached bone on four of their splendidly characterful Lord Rascal's Skeleton Warriors. This time round I'm painting up a small unit of Spearmen for "Dragon Rampant" in the hope that I'll eventually be able to deploy a twelve-model strong Light Foot unit which will be able to utilise its "Wall of Spears" special rule... 

Thursday, 10 January 2019

“You’re The Joke And Here’s The Punchline!”

"The clown prince of smash and grab!"
This 28mm scale resin miniature of Punchline is produced by “Kitbash Games” and will be one of the company's stretch goals for its upcoming "Supers Unlimited" "Kickstarter" in January 2019. "Better-known locally as Zorbo the Magnificent", this penniless clown entertainer "found two gleaming golden power gloves fallen from a smashed glass case" in an abandoned super-lair, which would transform him into a "heavy-hitting villain."

Dave Zorbavic was initially primed using two coats of "Vallejo" Heavy Green and had his trousers shaded with "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green. I then 'picked out' his big boots and tie with "Vallejo" Heavy Red, before heavily washing his bulbous footwear with "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson and his neck cloth in Nuln Oil. The mortgage defaulter's shirt was pigmented using a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Violet and "Citadel" Druchii Violet.
"Star Wars: Legion" WIPs - The three Scout Troopers have been primed, washed and dry-brushed
The criminal's power gloves were originally treated to a layer of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, and were subsequently painted with Gold and then a serious splash of "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. As a final step they were dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Gold. I decided against simply giving the clown an entirely "Vallejo" Dead White head by leaving some of his flesh showing around his neck and bonce, and simply washed it with a little Pale Grey.

As a final step I picked out the former party entertainer's hair with "Vallejo" Heavy Red and "Citadel" Nuln Oil", and his nose with a dab of "Vallejo" Heavy Red. I chose not to shade the nose as I wanted the red to appear quite flat, and eventually decided against applying any additional red-coloured make-up to his face and mouth as well, as I rather liked the hauntingly lifeless look his pure "Vallejo" Black eye sockets and mouth slit created...
Herald Of Khorne WIPs - The "Finecast" miniature is slowly having all its details 'picked out'
In addition to working on my much appreciated Punchline, I have also been busy assembling some Imperial foes for my "Star Wars: Legion" Wookie Warriors to battle in the near future. Whilst "Stormtroopers may form the bulk of the Galactic Empire’s infantry forces" my favourites have always been the Scout Troopers, so when I saw "Fantasy Flight Games" had released them as a Unit Expansion boxed set for their "unsung battles of the Galactic Civil War" tabletop game, I had to pick the special forces team up.

Lastly, I have stumbled across a long-forgotten, partially-painted "Finecast" miniatures of a Herald of Khorne by "Games Workshop", and as I have yet to play the Second Edition of "Age Of Sigmar", I fancied bulking out my Bloodletter host with the 'savage master of brutality'. Fortunately, the imposing figure was already primed and shaded, so I have been able to quite steadily pigment all his skull trophies, and get to work on all his gold armour.

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

"Not Daredevil, Clown -- But The Black Widow!"

"Now, all I need to do is wait -- Wait for my prey!"
This 28mm tall plastic “Wizkids” model of the Black Widow is miniature number 057 from the Clobberin Marvel "Heroclix" range, and depicts Natalia Alianovna Romanova "during her romantic involvement with Matt Murdock in San Francisco", when she was operating "as an independent superhero" alongside Daredevil. An "Expert tactician, hand-to-hand combatant and secret agent", the Avenger was created by Stan Lee, Don Rico and Don Heck for the April 1964 issue of "Marvel Comics" "Tales of Suspense".

Having been removed from her 'clicky-base' and super-glued on to a 25mm circular stand, the former Russian spy was primed using two coats of "Citadel" Abaddon Black and heavily dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal so I could make out the sculpt's details. I then considered whether to follow the pre-painted miniature's palette of her wearing a dark blue costume (as depicted in the Seventies comic books) or stick with her more modern-day all-black attire.
"Star Wars: Legion" WIPs - General Veers' AT-AT Commander's chest plate has undergone a re-paint
After applying a "Citadel" Nuln Oil wash over 'Natasha', I settled with the darker colour scheme, and layered both the super-heroine's chain belt and wrist shooters with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna" before applying a combination of Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade to them. As a final step I painted the Black Widow's famous red hair using "Vallejo" Heavy Red, shaded it with a splash of "Citadel" Nuln Oil" and later dry-brushed it with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Red.

With my latest "Heroclix" figure finished, I have once again turned my attention upon my collection of partially-painted "Star Wars" miniatures by "Fantasy Flight Games", and continued pigmenting the Minnesota-based manufacturer's "Star Wars: Legion" model of General Veers. I thought this Commander Expansion would provide the perfect Imperial leader for a Scout Trooper unit with which to bitterly oppose my current Wookie Warriors.
"Star Wars: Legion" WIPs - The three Wookie Warriors are slowly getting all their details 'picked out'
Unfortunately, I wasn't that happy with how his initial all-grey look turned out, especially the AT-AT Commander's disconcertingly dark grey chest plate. Luckily, having done some research on the Galactic Empire's Imperial Army human officer I spotted several costume photographs, as well as completed models, which depicted the armour as being a somewhat striking green. So I have decided to try and imitate that colour scheme instead.

Lastly, I have been slowly picking out a plethora of pouches, pockets, ammunition belts, braid bands, buckles, shoulder-pads, hand-blasters, leather straps and bladed weapons on my remaining Kashyyyk killers. Slightly frustratingly, the furry wookies continue to 'produce' details which I haven't actually spotted until after I've started shading in all their fiddly pieces of equipment. But hopefully shouldn't take took much longer to complete before being submitted into the Ninth Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge...

Sunday, 6 January 2019

"Come My Friends, The Ents Are Going To War."

"I am not going to tell you my name, not yet at any rate."
This 45mm tall "white metal figure" of Yewan Grove The Treeman is produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and can be brought from the company's "Toon Realms" range. Sculpted by Trish Carden, and suitably Treebeard-like in appearance, I thought this miniature would make an excellent leading tree herder for my current 'Lord Of The Toons' project using the "Dragon Rampant" rule-set by "Osprey Games".

Initially primed with a double layer of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, the Ent was 'immersed' in "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and later dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, as well as (the somewhat lighter) "Vallejo" Heavy Brown. I then 'picked out' Yewan's marvellously leafy beard with a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Green and "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green.
"Trees will come back here - young trees, wild trees."
The ancient creature's eyes were 'dotted' using a tiny spot of "Vallejo" Heavy Ochre". Whilst the fungi found living on his arms and back were treated to a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Red and "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson. The Treeman's two toadstools were painted in a similar fashion, albeit their stalks were pigmented using a little "Vallejo" Dead White and Pale Grey.

Finally "Vallejo" Heavy Brown and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade were applied to Grove's spear, and some Heavy Bluegrey to the weapon's tip. As I wanted to show that this 'sharp point' was actually made of stone as opposed to wood, I washed it with "Citadel" Nuln Oil and then carefully dry-brushed around its edges with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Bluegrey.
"Hoom, hum, I have not troubled about the Great Wars."
Sticking with “Lucid Eye Publications” and their "Toon Realms" range, I have also finished four of Grove's Shrubs as well. These 24mm tall "cartoon scale white metal figures" are also sculpted by Trish Carden, and will essentially be used on the tabletop as strength point/damage markers for the reduced model unit's Greater Warbeast.

As with Yewan, these Entlings were undercoated with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and then basically followed the self-same recipe of their much larger leader. Admittedly, their straggly beards were far less leafy looking than the Treeman's far more substantial facial growth. But I still decided to 'pick them out' using a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Green and "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green.

Friday, 4 January 2019

"Let The Wookiee Win."

"Chewbacca here is first mate on a ship that might suit us."
This 44mm tall plastic "detailed figure of Chewbacca" is produced by “Fantasy Flight Games” and can be found inside the company's "Chewbacca Ally Pack" for their "strategy board game of tactical combat" "Star Wars: Imperial Assault". Based upon the Wookie during his exploits in "the midst of the Galactic Civil War between the Rebel Alliance and the Galactic Empire after the destruction of the Death Star over Yavin 4", the expansion apparently allows  players to either "prevent the Empire from enslaving Wookiees on Kashyyyk, or infiltrate an Imperial labor camp."

The miniature was undercoated with two layers of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, shaded with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade, and dry-brushed with both (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and (lighter) Heavy Brown. Chewie's side-bag was then treated to a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Brown and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade, whilst his bowcaster and ammunition belt were pigmented in "Vallejo" Gunmetal Grey. These areas were subsequently washed with "Citadel" Nuln Oil and highlighted with a little more "Vallejo" Gunmetal Grey.
"Star Wars: Legion" WIPs - Chewbacca and two Wookie Warriors are slowly getting their detail 'picked out'
The Wookie smuggler's bandoleer's strap was painted using "Vallejo" Charred Brown and (more) Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter. However, because I felt the model was already brown enough, I decided to leave Chewbacca's shell boxes metallic-coloured, rather than continue painting in the pieces of belt which held them in place. Finally, I applied some additional "Citadel" Nuln Oil to certain areas of the Millennium Falcon's co-pilot, in order to darken him down a bit and break up the colour consistency of his fur.

Sticking with both Wookie Warriors and "Fantasy Flight Games" I have made some more progress on the Origins Award-winner's slightly larger-sized Kashyyyk killers for "Star Wars: Legion". In particular, I have finished blocking in all the base colours on this rule-set's version of Chewbacca and now just need to apply a variety of washes to his weapon and equipment before a final couple of dry-brushes.
"Kitbash Games" WIPs - Punchline and Roughneck
I have also managed to get the majority of my "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna completed on both Chewie's accompanying special forces unit's Leader and his Ryyk Blade-carrying colleagues, and even started base-coating one of the Wookie warrior's bandoleer, hand-weapons, fire-arm and shoulder-armour. Being over 40mm tall all of these models should bag me at least seven points each in the Ninth Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge, so should help push me ever closer to my 500 point target tally by Late March 2019...

Lastly, I have been quietly working away on couple of super-powered resin figures by "Kitbash Games" from their "Supers Unlimited" range. I hope to have the "clown prince of smash and grab", Punchline, finished reasonably soon, and can then focus more fully upon one of the game's anti-heroes, Roughneck.